Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

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Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Mabrick » Mon May 13, 2019 3:24 am

So for those of you in the U.S.A, game companies are about to face a law that will would change the entire industry.

Recently, a U.S senator has proposed a bill to ban lootboxes, pay to win features and microtransactions in games that are under 18. The reason for the ban is that the business model is considered to be "gambling", cashing in on money to obtain some random premium game item or boost a level. Since minors play games with that kind of system, it is deemed harmful to them. Its apparent that big game companies have recently been very predatory in their monetary practices to gamers and pushing to implement their system in their later titles.

If a law like this were to pass, then the gaming industry would be severely impacted. We would see the entire mobile games stores be cleansed of its game library for having games with monetary systems, we'd be back in the 2000s were monetising games weren't common. Any game with monetary system (that is under 17) wouldn't be made.

Kids begging parents for their parent's credit card to buy for some premium bucks or season pass happens in real life. I actually care about kids these days, and i really am in favour if this passes. It just makes gaming for minors safer (even though there might be some loopholes). The lack of microtransactions or forced monetisation would make games alot cleaner...

I could drone all about this but this thread isn't really about my side of the story so I would like to hear your side of the story. What you think about this bill? How would it really affect gaming? Is it for the better or worse?
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by UlticraftMTT » Mon May 13, 2019 4:10 am

I think it's for the better, especially so EA will be forced to stop being greedy, and Fortnite could become less addictive. However, i think developers are probably just going to remove the mandatory payment features instead of removing the games entirely.

Most DLC such as DLC Smash Bros. Fighters or Minecraft Skin Packs shouldn't be affected, since you don't need DLC to actually beat or play a game.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Royalguard » Mon May 13, 2019 5:16 am

I don't live in the US, so this doesn't impact me (yet).

IMO, good riddance. Games that rely on gambling mechanics and predatory monetization elements have been a poison on the gaming industry for years, since the early days of mobile phone gaming, and had since spread and infected console gaming and PC gaming as well. Businesses should not have the right to psychologically manipulate their customers into giving them money, especially children or people with thinking or descision-making impairments, which could lead them to dangerous gambling habits in the future that could greatly damage their lives.

Sure, it can't be denied that there will be heavy consequences of taking away gambling mechanics and predatory monetization elements, as some gaming companies heavily rely on it to make money, or to even stay afloat at all. Profits will fall, shares will drop, jobs will be lost, some companies may even need to shut down completely.

It should be noted that gaming companies (such as EA, and some others) have abused the system so much, that they where the ones that brought it to various governmental bodies' attention. They where given various warning to properly regulate the practice or else they would personally intervene, only to be met with responses from various parties doubling down on their stance on keeping the practice as it currently was, so they only have their own greed to blame for governmental intervention.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Brazencoronet17 » Mon May 13, 2019 8:52 pm

Mobile games will proably lose their free status then since the fact they can't live on their microtransaction profits then. Is the law passed yet or not?

I wonder what will happen to Fortnite
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by UlticraftMTT » Wed May 15, 2019 1:17 am

Brazencoronet17 wrote:
Mon May 13, 2019 8:52 pm
Mobile games will proably lose their free status then since the fact they can't live on their microtransaction profits then. Is the law passed yet or not?

I wonder what will happen to Fortnite
A lot of mobile games, at least back a few years ago, lived off of ad revenue and not microtransactions. Angry Birds, Temple Run, and several other games did this back in the Early 10's.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Mabrick » Wed May 15, 2019 4:05 pm

UlticraftMTT wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 1:17 am
Brazencoronet17 wrote:
Mon May 13, 2019 8:52 pm
Mobile games will proably lose their free status then since the fact they can't live on their microtransaction profits then. Is the law passed yet or not?

I wonder what will happen to Fortnite
A lot of mobile games, at least back a few years ago, lived off of ad revenue and not microtransactions. Angry Birds, Temple Run, and several other games did this back in the Early 10's.

So now if they can't monetise games anymore because of the law, i guess now they probably have to put ads in their game that somehow relate...

They've gotta make money somehow if that bill were to pass.
(Now i have second thoughts about this bill passing)
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by BenPlusMM » Thu May 16, 2019 12:46 am

Mabrick wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 4:05 pm
UlticraftMTT wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 1:17 am
Brazencoronet17 wrote:
Mon May 13, 2019 8:52 pm
Mobile games will proably lose their free status then since the fact they can't live on their microtransaction profits then. Is the law passed yet or not?

I wonder what will happen to Fortnite
A lot of mobile games, at least back a few years ago, lived off of ad revenue and not microtransactions. Angry Birds, Temple Run, and several other games did this back in the Early 10's.

So now if they can't monetise games anymore because of the law, i guess now they probably have to put ads in their game that somehow relate...

They've gotta make money somehow if that bill were to pass.
(Now i have second thoughts about this bill passing)
Advertisements are easy to avoid. Just put yourself on Airplane Mode and you're good to go. This puts mobile devs in a pickle that it inside a pickle jar filled with hot water, since that's a really heckin' easy workaround and that's a workaround for their only source of income.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Royalguard » Thu May 16, 2019 6:31 am

Remember the days when game developers used to sell feature-complete games for a full retail price, and occasionally sold expansion packs that brought large amounts of additional content? The days where companies where successful based upon the quality of their products, and the trust they gained and maintained with their target demographic. I miss those days...

I'm not a fan of modern day gaming and its tendency to sell incomplete/broken games at full retail price, nickle and diming players for basic content and quality-of-life features that should have been in the game upon release, and selling DLC for over-inflated prices for such minimal amounts of content.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Brazencoronet17 » Thu May 16, 2019 10:57 am

Royalguard wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 6:31 am
Remember the days when game developers used to sell feature-complete games for a full retail price, and occasionally sold expansion packs that brought large amounts of additional content? The days where companies where successful based upon the quality of their products, and the trust they gained and maintained with their target demographic. I miss those days...

I'm not a fan of modern day gaming and its tendency to sell incomplete/broken games at full retail price, nickle and diming players for basic content and quality-of-life features that should have been in the game upon release, and selling DLC for over-inflated prices for such minimal amounts of content.
If a game is worth 60 dollars charge it 60 dollars.
Not many games these days are worth 60 dollars.
Many games are still charged at 60 dollars.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Gravitrax64 » Fri May 17, 2019 1:10 am

BenPlusMM wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 12:46 am
Mabrick wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 4:05 pm
UlticraftMTT wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 1:17 am


A lot of mobile games, at least back a few years ago, lived off of ad revenue and not microtransactions. Angry Birds, Temple Run, and several other games did this back in the Early 10's.

So now if they can't monetise games anymore because of the law, i guess now they probably have to put ads in their game that somehow relate...

They've gotta make money somehow if that bill were to pass.
(Now i have second thoughts about this bill passing)
Advertisements are easy to avoid. Just put yourself on Airplane Mode and you're good to go. This puts mobile devs in a pickle that it inside a pickle jar filled with hot water, since that's a really heckin' easy workaround and that's a workaround for their only source of income.
I'm not sure if I like the sound of this bill. I mean I would LOVE to see games with little to no micro transactions, but then again this makes me wonder. If this bill passes would game developers be allowed to make any DLCs?
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by UlticraftMTT » Fri May 17, 2019 2:41 am

Gravitrax64 wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 1:10 am
BenPlusMM wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 12:46 am
Mabrick wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 4:05 pm



So now if they can't monetise games anymore because of the law, i guess now they probably have to put ads in their game that somehow relate...

They've gotta make money somehow if that bill were to pass.
(Now i have second thoughts about this bill passing)
Advertisements are easy to avoid. Just put yourself on Airplane Mode and you're good to go. This puts mobile devs in a pickle that it inside a pickle jar filled with hot water, since that's a really heckin' easy workaround and that's a workaround for their only source of income.
I'm not sure if I like the sound of this bill. I mean I would LOVE to see games with little to no micro transactions, but then again this makes me wonder. If this bill passes would game developers be allowed to make any DLCs?
DLCs should be allowed, they usually don't hide crucial game features behind them. Even if the top tier character in, say a Smash Bros. game was DLC, you could still have a chance against the DLC character with a starter or unlockable character.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Bean man » Fri May 17, 2019 2:43 am

Gravitrax64 wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 1:10 am
I'm not sure if I like the sound of this bill. I mean I would LOVE to see games with little to no micro transactions, but then again this makes me wonder. If this bill passes would game developers be allowed to make any DLCs?
Pay-to-win and and extra content are two different things.

Personally, I'm glad they proposed this. Too lazy to explain why, but to summarize I hope that this'll stop some companies from getting too greedy.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Brazencoronet17 » Fri May 17, 2019 9:02 pm

It's a mixed bag. Of course, modern gaming sucks nowadays mostly.
But this law could put so many companies in danger.

So one or the other: Company shutdowns or ending of corporate greed. What do you make of it?
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Mabrick » Sun May 19, 2019 3:21 am

Brazencoronet17 wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 9:02 pm
It's a mixed bag. Of course, modern gaming sucks nowadays mostly.
But this law could put so many companies in danger.

So one or the other: Company shutdowns or ending of corporate greed. What do you make of it?
It would be mostly their fault for not listening to the community feedback enough or learn from previous mistakes. I don't think at this point these big companies might be worth saving if they keep doing this. If it passes, then the companies may try to find ways to get ideas from community, or just be resilient and fight back.

The bill shouldn't pass too late, otherwise the game companies may be bankrupt by that time.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Uranus » Sun May 19, 2019 5:04 pm

Mabrick wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 3:21 am
Brazencoronet17 wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 9:02 pm
It's a mixed bag. Of course, modern gaming sucks nowadays mostly.
But this law could put so many companies in danger.

So one or the other: Company shutdowns or ending of corporate greed. What do you make of it?
It would be mostly their fault for not listening to the community feedback enough or learn from previous mistakes. I don't think at this point these big companies might be worth saving if they keep doing this. If it passes, then the companies may try to find ways to get ideas from community, or just be resilient and fight back.

The bill shouldn't pass too late, otherwise the game companies may be bankrupt by that time.
the companies in question should be well aware of this ban and should find different strategies to survive

companies like EA likely would try to find a loophole so they can produce more money without any intervention with the government

companies like Nintendo aren't really effected since they usually have no in game currency and if they did, then they would know what they are doing

Mobile Games are going to be the most effected. since a majority of them have pay to win features, many games could struggle with their profit or survival

the definition of Gambling is



(gamble

/ˈɡamb(ə)l/





verb

gerund or present participle: gambling



1.


play games of chance for money; bet.
"he gambles on football"


synonyms: bet, wager, place a bet, lay a bet, stake money on something, back the horses, try one's luck on the horses; More
informalplay the ponies;

informalpunt, chance one's arm, have a flutter;

raregame


"I go to the races when I want to gamble"




•bet (a sum of money).
"they gambled their money on cards"





2.


take risky action in the hope of a desired result.
"he was gambling on the success of his satellite TV channel"


synonyms: take a chance, take a risk, take a leap in the dark, leave things to chance, speculate, venture, buy a pig in a poke;)
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by DAS » Sun May 19, 2019 5:17 pm

Lootboxes are gambling, but microtransactions on their own are not gambling. When they show you what you're buying, you know what you're paying for.
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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Diamond Wolf » Sun May 19, 2019 10:36 pm

But you always win with lootboxes.

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Re: Discussion: The ban on lootboxes and microtransactions.

Post by Royalguard » Mon May 20, 2019 8:19 am

DAS wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 5:17 pm
Lootboxes are gambling, but microtransactions on their own are not gambling. When they show you what you're buying, you know what you're paying for.
While, yes, microtransactions are not always gambling, they still have the potiental to be equally as malicious and psychologically manipulative, regardless if they are lootboxes or not. Microtransations in general I feel need better regulation, the laws have been far behind on these concepts for way too long now.

(This coming from someone who works in the field of marketing themselves.)
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